Leaf it alone
A landmark tree in Victoria Park could yet be spared the axe, according to the local council.
THE Town of Victoria Park has denied a decision has been made to chop down the landmark tree at the corner of Mint Street and Shepperton Road, saying it will try to retain the giant Chinese Banyan.
Several people used last week’s annual electors’ meeting to voice concerns for the tree and the council’s handling of the matter with the couple most affected, Peter and Colette Smith.
The Smiths live in the corner house heavily shaded by the council-owned verge tree and, despite being the people to raise an issue about the tree’s invasive root structure, are campaigning to save it.
Victoria Park Mayor Trevor Vaughan said tree removal was always a last resort.
“We want to work with you to see if we can save that tree,” he told Mr Smith at the meeting.
“The Town knows it is very important to preserve large trees like this wherever possible.
“In some circumstances, where unsuitable species are growing in awkward places, the cost and risk associated with property damage and the safety of residents and the public must also be considered.”
An arborist report commissioned by the council recommended against installing a root barrier or severing roots because of the risk of creating structural instability.